JOHN WALKER & SONS XR21 Legacy Collection Hainan
In Malaysia, “Gia Ti Bo Lai Huan” is a common phrase used among the Hainanese people. It means that their ancestors were attracted by “the beauty of Nanyang” and took the risk to cross the sea to pan for gold.
Hainanese people have origins from Hainan island in South China. Fishing was their main livelihood. They worship Goddess Thean Hou (Sea Goddess Mazu) who keeps them safe through her miraculous interventions. Hainanese people worship her in places like the Thean Hou Temple in Kuala Lumpur, which can be traced back to early 189Os.
Goddess Shui Wei, the marine goddess that originated from Hainan island is also worshipped by the Hainanese peopie across the world It is believed that she travelled across the ocean with the Hainanese people when they immigrated to Southeast Asia and protected them through their journey.
First generation Hainanese immigrants were mainly involved in service sectors to make a living. Most of the Hainanese opened coffee shops or worked for Westerners. Exposure to Western cuisine influenced their cooking styles, which led to the creation of dishes like the Hainanese chicken chop, French toast, Hainanese coffee and bread.
Hainan Chicken Rice originated from Wenchang City in Hainan, China, In the early 1930s. Hainanese Chicken Rice could easily be found in the streets of Malacca, Penang, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur. They were sold by hawkers with bamboo baskets filled with chicken and ‘chicken rice balls’.